The Writing on the Wall

David Gaunt

"But you did not honor the God who holds in His hand your life and all your ways.  Therefore He sent the hand that wrote the inscription.  This is the inscription that was written: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, PARSIN.  Here is what these words mean:  Mene: God has numbered the days of your reign and brought it to an end.  Tekel: You have been weighed on the scales and found wanting.  Peres: Your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.  That very night Belshazzar, king of the Babylonians, was slain.”  Daniel 5:23b-28, 30

Did you know the phrase, “The writing is on the wall,” or “The handwriting is on the wall,” came from this part of the Bible?  That saying usually refers to a sign of something bad that is about to happen.  It definitely meant that for King Belshazzar.

According to Daniel 5:23, Belshazzar had “set” himself “up against the Lord of Heaven.”  He had been partying with his wives, girlfriends, and the leaders of the Babylonian Empire.  He turned the sacred silver and gold goblets from the Temple in Jerusalem into the “Red Solo Cup” of his day.

Suddenly the fingers of a human hand appeared and wrote on the plaster of the wall those interesting Aramaic words. My paraphrase of “MENE, MENE, TEKEL, PARSIN” is “TIME’S UP!  TIME’S UP!  YOU OWE!  YOUR KINGDOM IS GONE!”  If you’re not familiar with the story, you might want to read Daniel Chapter 5 sometime, soon.

But for now, just consider that all your days are numbered, and coming to an end.  If we are weighed by our actions, then the scales will be found wanting.  That is why Jesus came to tip the scales in our favor.  You don’t have to live in fear of the writing on the wall.

Romans 5:6-9 tells us, “You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly.  Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die.  But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Since we have now been justified by His blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through Him!”

No one but Jesus could ever satisfy God’s perfect standards.  All of the punishment His children deserve was taken on by His own son, Jesus.  All sin, past, present, and future has already been accounted for by Jesus.

Have you turned to Jesus to solve your sin problem?  Are you experiencing the peace of knowing God’s forgiveness in Christ?  Are there still behaviors in your life that are setting you up against God?

I’d encourage you to simply talk (pray) to Him about your answers to those questions.  He’s listening.

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